Experiencing traumatic events affects the way that our bodies experience the world around us. Our defensive systems can become overactive and we can become overwhelmed and move into fight or flight mode even when the logical side of our brain knows that we are safe.
Reactions to Trauma
Everyone reacts to trauma differently. Some of the more common effects are:
- Difficulty Sleeping
- Difficulty Concentrating
- Panic Attacks
- Avoidant Behaviours
- Aggressive or Reckless Behaviours
“After a traumatic experience, the human system of self-preservation seems to go onto permanent alert, as if the danger might return at any moment.”Judith Lewis Herman
The Effects of Trauma on the Brain
In each of our brains we have something called the amygdala which is often described as our smoke detector. It activates when we perceive there may be danger and activates our fight or flight response getting us ready to cope with imminent danger.
After experiencing traumatic events, our smoke detector is likely to activate in ways that it didn’t before. This can be at times when logically, we know that we are safe. The result of this smoke detector activation is a rush of stress hormones usually reserved for when we are in imminent danger. This can lead to flashbacks or panic attacks. Our body is prepared to fight off a fast approaching bear when in reality, we are out trying to do our shopping.
Counselling for Trauma
My experience of counselling trauma victims started with my first counselling placement where I provided support to those who had been affected by fatal road traffic collisions. Since then, I have worked with many people who have experienced or witnessed traumatic events.
Being traumatised leaves us feeling unsafe in our own bodies as well as in the wider world. By seeking counselling to overcome trauma, the first stage is to make sure that you are feeling safe within the counselling environment.
The sessions are led by you and we will only go as far as you are able to go. The aim is to make you feel safe within the counselling relationship which will in turn lead you to feeling safe enough to heal how you feel in the rest of the world.
As a counsellor, I offer a safe space where we can start to rebuild the way that you experience the world around you. By working through what you have experienced as well as exploring triggers, my aim is to give you back the control that you lost by being traumatised.
I will be honest with you and let you know that dealing with trauma can be difficult at times and it is perfectly natural to feel apprehensive about coming to counselling. Regardless of what caused the trauma, it is common for people to avoid activities where they are reminded of what has happened.
Counselling for Trauma – A safe place to grow
Talking things over in a comfortable and secure setting can be the best way to overcome the effects of trauma and can be the first step to you feeling fully in control of yourself and your life once again.
If you feel you would benefit from counselling or if you have any questions, please get in touch with the buttons below and I will get back to you as soon as I am able.
If talking through your trauma is not something you are able to do at this point, you may want to consider the rewind technique. This is a trauma specific treatment described as “closure without disclosure.” The Rewind is a proven technique that can stop the common symptoms of trauma such as flashbacks, anxiety, nightmares and hypervigilance.
For more information please click the below link.